Hyperloop: What is it?.

The fifth mode of transport

Have you heard about the Hyperloop? No? Ok, here is a crash course on the transportation revolution of the near future…

SpaceX, Paypal and Tesla creator and Billionaire Elon Musk first put forward his idea for a fifth mode of transport in 2013 when he published a concept blueprint on the internet. In it he outlined the basic mechanics of operation and challenged the world to take the mantle.

The concept is this:

  • vacuum tubes would transport magnetically levitating pods which can move people at speeds of up to 760mph.
  • The system would run along the central reservation of existing motorways meaning no more destruction of wildlife habitats.
  • The system would run entirely on solar power and generate more power than is needed to keep the hyperpoop running, meaning the rest could be fed into the main electricity grid.
  • It would cost 1/5th the amount that it would to create something like the HS2/3 high speed train lines.

The uptake

So far two companies have been formed to take the concept forwards. Scale modal versions are only months away from actually demonstrating it works in Nevada. Slovakia’s government could be moving forward with a full-scale tube connection from Bratislava to Vienna and Budapest. More on that here. French railways company SNCF have just invested in hyperloop. Find out more on that here. MIT have just unveiled their Hyperloop pod design. Find out more about that here.



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6th May 2016 by Chris Gibson
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